tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN November 22, 2013 2:00am-4:01am EST
action at the time is directed at bitcoin because bitcoin was the sole method of payment on silk road and assume i also wanted to shut down or stamp out bitcoin. that is not the case. i do not want to shut down or stamp out bitcoin. new york sits in many ways at the nexus of all the issues being discussed today and his financial capital the potential for creation of a new payment platform and the rise of alternative currencies could have profound and exciting implications in the way we conduct financial transactions. technology and venture capital, new york has every interest on building on the technologies like bit coin that have to revolutionize payment system or with contain the building blocks for new technology platforms. all of that is threatened by the association of bit coins with
illicit activities. if bit coin continues to attract attention, mostly as a way to finance purchases on websites like silk road, it's going to find itself in the digital waste land. so in order for the legitimate uses of technology like bit coin to flourish, it's imperative that his accepted uses must be addressed. there must be a way to separate the weak from the chaff. bottom line is very simple, i would ask mr. gal ipy -- >> gal ipy -- >> i would ask mr. gal ipy, do you have any specific suggestions of how we separate the weak from the chaff. what would you suggest to the witnesses on panel one to ensure that we address legitimate law enforcement concerns, without duly inhibiting the development
of these promising new technologies? >> yes, thank you, senator schumer. i think you first have to understand there are multiple parts of bit coin. the low level protocol, the bits and bites that make it work, and the application and service layer that businesses and consumers can engage in. this is where you find businesses like mine operating. when you want to try to separate the legitimate uses from the illegitimate ones, clearly the point to do that are by the visible service providers like ourselves, like bit pay. we have over 12,000 businesses using our service to accept bit coin and we have a very strict know your customer policy to make sure we know every merchant, who they are and what they're selling. we only want the legitimate actors using our service. the bad guys are going to try to figure out how 20 do it on their own. but it shows you with the recent arrest, just because you use bit coin, doesn't mean you can evade
the law. they caught the guy. he's in jail. >> took long enough. >> yeah. so i think there's a lot of effort and services like ours and others are willing to work with regulators, to ensure what we do complies with the rules, because we want to protect consumers from fraud, to prevent the bad actors from using the system. >> and i'm sure you've thought about this, because you realize the danger that silk actors have to this appropriate new way of payment? do you have any suggestions? if you don't, would you like to spend some time thinking them up and sending them to us? i know the record will remain open for a week. that would be helpful. >> i'll be happy to do that. >> are there other answers in regard to my specific thoughts? anyone have any thoughts? miss tun stall? >> yes. so i think that a very good
point was made by mr. galippi, and that is that the face to the user is the point to catch the transaction. so very similar to the internet gambling restrictions that are in place, and i would actually be curious, do you screen merchant codes for internet gambling as a credit card processor would do? >> yeah, correct. we don't allow that. >> so that type of approach for tagging the transactions and knowing what the parties are, you can still be anonymous as long as it's a transaction between an individual and this company for a purchase. so we do have some exists controls and examples that can help on this side. >> well, again i'd be interested in your smubmitting the specifis in writing. my time is up so -- >> i would just say i think mr.
galippi deserves credit for creating the comp he creates with a lot of the controls he created. i would question if that's applicable across the industry and whether there are thix we can do to make sure that the kinds of mitigations and controls that he's put in place are applicable to all in that business. >> thank you all very much, and i hope you would submit some specific suggestions and mr. gal ipy, in detail about what you've been able to do, so we might parlay that to other companies. although, we may not be able to do it in certain places. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you very much, senator schumer. >> thank you to our witnesses. we'll keep the record open for additional questions for seven days. this concludes the meeting of the sub committee on national security and the sub committee on economic policy.
the author is joining us this morning. let's start with -- what is bit coin? a form of money born in the digital age for the digital era. to sendway for people money back and forth that is as close to friction free as we have ever seen. it is simultaneously indicative inthe explosive growth interest in alternative currencies, alternative to the euro, what have you, yet it is completely unique and unlike anything we have ever really seen in the past when it comes to different kinds of money out there. host: how is it used? it is used to send money from me to you, down the street or in singapore, to buy and sell goods and services online.
products,everyday sometimes services. the street, down here in portland, or as a lot of us have heard, for more nefarious purposes, like purchasing drugs online. one thing they offer that is both enticing to a lot of people and worrisome to law enforcement is that it provides a cloak of anonymity that is almost on par with a cash transaction. in other words if you buy drugs from someone on the street with cash, it is pretty much an untraceable transaction, unlike credit cards. it coined offers something very close to anonymity -- is something very close to anonymity. on the other side of the coin, do you track how
this stuff in a civil society? we need to track the income that people are bringing in so that we can tax it. host: is it a currency or a commodity? guest: sundays it feels like people are talking about it as the latest version of cash and other days like it is gold, because it has this limited which is frustrating to people who are worried about the fate of the u.s. dollar. if we just keep issuing more and more dollars, does that not deflate the value of the dollar in our pocket? it is hard to know exactly which one of these things bitcoin is, because money serves multiple functions. it is a medium of exchange, a standard account, store of value. so, what on earth is bitcoin? it is a currency because
anything can be a currency. as long as people engage in the transaction and infuse the currency with value by way of their faith. if you believe that these uncut rubies that i am holding are a sufficient payment for the pizza that you just made and want to sell to me, bingo, we can have a transaction. , wampum feathers shells, japanese yen. in that sense, bitcoin is another currency. on the other hand it is something more, it is almost like the internet of money. from a technical standpoint it is an open source platform. we can build on it and build things out of it. it is a currency, but it is much more than that and we are already seeing just a hint of what that could be with products like an e-mail service that you to use the platform for protect the anonymity and privacy of your e-mail correspondence.
so, it really has nothing to do with the currency. currency hasw, caught fire of late, these were the hearings yesterday in washington. severalght, there were hearings on capitol hill taking a look at digital currency and what it all means. but how could it be currency? isn't a nickel a nickel? a dollar a dollar? when you look at the value of bitcoin, the price range from five dollars per bitcoin to $20, than april 1 to may 1 the price ranged from $79 to $237 per bitcoin. and then you have seen it trade just recently at $400 per bitcoin. host: in the past day or two it has --guest: in the past day or two it has shot up to even $700.
these hearings, with government officials saying that with a number of caveats there is nothing explicitly wrong or illicit about bit point or other digital currencies, for that matter, but you are absolutely right, the value is all over the map. these price fluctuations, and this is what i tried to cover for "wired," the price fluctuations are very scary to the everyman. if you do not understand how the technology works, unless you are filthy rich it seems too risky to engage in this kind of speculation. this is -- what some people say is the achilles' heel of bitcoin , other people are just calling it the early days and something inevitable, you will see speculative value much more than trade value. in other words 20 years from now let's say that bitcoin really takes hold, more and more people own and transact with it.
theoretically, will settle down as people use it to buy and sell goods online, much as they do with the dollar and the euro. that is a huge? . no one knows if that will actually happen. again, the volatility in the price is what scares people. but the idea that price volatility by itself somehow disqualifies bitcoin from being a currency is nonsense. the somali schilling is a currency. u.s. dollar is remarkably stable, but it's value still function waits because it is not anchored to any real-world substance that you can dig out of the ground. are attributes to national currency, currency issued by central banks that gives them more stability. one is just the fact that most
of us are using those currencies for almost everything, so that widespread acceptance and use of this form of money for a medium of exchange, for value, for a standard unit of account, this kind of settles the price down, but again, it still moves, but bitcoin is sort of getting tossed around in the wind because it is so completely new. -- recentrecent vista discussion and disclosure of interest in bitcoin, that is when everyone is sort of jumping in the pool and kind of money managers will say investors, woe, woe, backup. this looks like a bubble. host: in this piece that you wrote you say it is time to take it mainstream. how do you do that? well, there are a couple of things that could happen. the idea in the east that frankly agitates a lot of super users of bitcoin is the notion
that although bitcoin's magic and power comes from the fact ist it is decentralized, it not a currency issued from on high by a central bank. it is controlled by this network of users and computers that monitor and keep track of all the transactions. it is a mathematically based currency, new bitcoin are created based on algorithm, not the decision-making skills of individuals sitting around a mahogany table. i wanted to interrupt, because i wanted this to be clear, there is no centralization to this. no federal reserve. guest: exactly, and this is what makes bitcoin unlike anything we have seen before. this facet is really exciting to a lot of people who are again worried about the long-term value of a national currency
controlled by a central bank. it is also attractive, frankly, of the supereople libertarian stripe, worried control,ernment privacy, want to return to the gold standard, they like the idea of a currency that has value that government cannot touch. indeed, that is a very powerful, if not world changing idea. another way to think about that is that there is no there there to shut down. it becomesk that if too problematic, law enforcement can shut it down, but they cannot. it would be like shutting down the internet. you can try, you can nibble around the edges -- for example, there are bitcoin exchanges that help individuals convert u.s. dollars in two bitcoin or back and forth, you can shut down exchange -- indeed, some have been shut down because they were involved in criminal endeavors,
but you cannot shut down bitcoin . this is sort of a magical aspect of this new form of money. how do you take it mainstream? problem, issue, or the is this price volatility. the everyman, when you are not superrich, you do not want to engage in that kind of risky activity with your money. you certainly do not want to do nominate your children's college fund into bitcoin anytime soon. how can you do this online using bitcoin? the idea that really rattled a lot of enthusiasts is that maybe it requires a little bit of centralized control. when you say those words, you infuriate all sorts of bitcoin enthusiasts, because their default mode of thinking is that now you are talking about a central bank, a federal reserve, human beings deciding this
stuff, not mathematics. they think that not only is that garbage, but it changes exactly how bit point works. what i would say in response is that we still need some kind of guard rails in effect to keep the currency within a reasonable boundary so that the boundary is not so low or high that you get this spiraling out of control that will just send everyone fleeing for a safer form of money. in fact we have seen hints of this already. there is a group behind bitcoin in a way that has stepped in on thesion to make sure software is working smoothly and that these transactions are being settled appropriately. i just do not think it is outlandish to think that that could make limited controls to provide a guard rail for bitcoin.
one swing too far to the left or right and maybe that would make it more reasonable to the everyman. that is step one. step two, of course, is showing the everyman that this is incredibly value -- valuable to you. having to pay two percent, three percent, four percent for every credit card charge out there -- right away this is like what bit point is doing that is attractive to merchants, you are talking about frictionless or nearly frictionless form of money or payment transaction. so-called person-to-person transaction. you are cutting out the middleman. by just getting money from me to you. this is why people talk about virtual currency as revolutionary and why a lot of the levelheaded discussions during the hearings in washington this week talked about the potential, the positive potential of something for the economy as
a whole and for consumers. oft: we covered a couple those hearings here on c-span. for viewers who are interested, they should go to our website, www.c-span.org the headline yesterday was "virtual cash -- www.c-span.org. the headline yesterday was "virtual cash increases problems around the world." we have this twitter message -- no, not at all. for me this is what is so exciting about the future of money. really know -- i started this project a couple of fête,ago, looking at the possibly the dubious fate of the u.s. dollar, specifically in its cash iteration. we are not talking about the
death of the dollar, we are talking about paper money. at the time i thought that this was kind of the two-part valentine, one part eulogy to these rectangular slips of paper that we all have this unique relationship with. something that was both dazzling and a dizzying happened when i put the dollar under the microscope, figuratively and literally. you start to learn about not just where currency comes from and the history of the dollar, but where it is going and what it could be in the future. in the digital realm, money could be and really already is taking all kinds of different shapes. again, because anything can be a currency as long as the users infuse it with value by way of their faith and by using it. the dollar, for example. nothing makes a dollar worth a dollar except that our belief that it is valuable and our
confidence that some third party will accept it as payment later. e, there no there ther is no gold in a vault somewhere, it is just paper that we have come to accept based on the full faith and trust of the u.s. government, etc. it is the same thing with alternative currencies that we see sprouting up -- ithaca, new york, has something called ithaca hours. them in the berkshires, massachusetts. anything can be a currency. in the digital realm, there is nothing stopping us from having -- i am holding my hand up like this all the time because i am picturing on your mobile phone what is essentially a rainbow of different currency options to make payments at a merchant or online, depending on which which transaction,
makes the most sense for you as a consumer in that particular moment. host: i was just thinking, that sounds very complicated. that future of deciding which currency to use the side -- based on what you are buying. yes and no. 10 years ago my default mode was to picture a cash register. you would be crazy to think that it would be yen, euros, dollars, pesos, etc.. you are going to provide correct change in all of these? convertd you be able to the proper exchange rate in that time and place? yourobile ubiquity in pocket, you have these computers that can do all of this convergence on the fly. present to people the obvious value proposition. an example that i like to use,
it sounds cutesy on the surface but it is legitimate, i think, something like airline miles or, even more so, disney dollars. that is a community currency that you use at disney land when you go there to buy and sell on- site. now, if i am going to emerge and by a latte, computer, new paris sneak her, and they say -- if you transact using disney dollars, when you have them in your virtual wallet, when you take your family 14 months from now and you use the disney dollars there, you will receive what amounts to a 15% discount on all of your transactions. for a lot of families on the margin financially, they have been saving for years and years to go for a family of five, this is a lot of money in savings. on theseem confusing
surface to have this rainbow of currency options, but once people see the value in using this currency, they will do so. the fact that airline miles are already so popular and being used by people to buy trips or hotel reservations, rental cars? that is proof that this kind of thing can fly. and of course, government has no problem with it as long as the airline miles you are issuing do not look too much like the u.s. dollar in their physical form and you are not advertising them loudly as a competitor to the u.s. dollar. david wolman, i have to get to our callers hear. he is the author of "the end of counterfeiters, preachers, techies, dreamers, the coming cashless society." texas, good morning. caller: i am going to speak by
going in the wind, from here to there, but you will see the point i am coming to. some of my educated words are not too well. i will show you what i have directed. russia, canada, america, the tri-force. there will be a different alignment. america taking over this world -- not this world, but with the war there will be a new relief formed. this goes back to the blue action -- goes back to the ancient greeks. there will be a new testament. there will be certain zones for churches, some of them will pay their tithes to the federal administration. governingnati and the of the stars, bringing the balances together, this will link us universally in the ocean
, putting pressure on the court, causing earthquakes for the zoning of oil. host: ok, i am going to leave it there and move on to a tweet. guest: that is a great question. i do not actually know if you can borrow in bit coin. my guess is that they do not exist, but i would like to hear from people who know otherwise. this is indicative of the fact that bitcoin is so unique. will there be banking services? will there be an online wallet that holds onto it for you wetjen market could you ever get credit?
could you denominate a mortgage? i do not know about the interest rate question and it remains to be seen if bitcoin will mature in that fashion and be embraced by the more formal banking sector or if it will remain within the purview of the technocrat. tom, good morning. can you hear me ok? -- can you hear me ok? the one thing that scares me aret bitcoin, there countries that feel that the american dollar is insubstantial , nothing that we can depend on as we have in the past. americans do not realize that if a terrorist wants to buy oil somewhere,arabia or they have to change the money into american dollars. the american dollar is used as the basis for trade and whatnot throughout the world. a lot of people feel, though,
that america cannot be defended anymore.depended upon if they decide to pay in other forms of money or exchanges to use the sides the american dollar, people hate the central bank because they print out all the money, but people have confidence that the money coming from the central bank is good money, that it can be used throughout the world to keep our economy going. host: tom, those are your concerns with bitcoin? caller: something to the point where the american dollar is under pressure. host: david wolman? preciselys is representative of the anxieties that people have about the state of national currencies and our government, that it is driving people toward bitcoin. you can think a lot about digital gold. you have to think again of this idea, the full faith and trust
of the u.s. government. what makes one dollar one dollar? that is our case with issuing institutions. behind that faith is the government. if you do not have faith in the decision-making that the government is conducting to protect the value of the currency over the long term, you are going to look for something else. this is why i imagine, greta, you do not denominate your kids college fund in somalia shillings, because you do not have faith in the currency. with the government shutdown and everything before that, the fiscal cliff, the confidence of people in the dollar is being rattled because their confidence in washington's ability to get anything done has been shaken. that being said, the status of the dollar as the so-called reserve currency of the world is not in jeopardy anytime soon.
most international transactions are still settled in dollars. most central banks the world over pay for money unreserved so that they can buy and sell currency to adjust their own prices. one way to think about it, the thread from cormac mccarthy, if you completely lose faith in the u.s. dollar you might as well go get your blankets and your guns. all currency values are free- floating. they are all tethered to the u.s. dollar, but the dollar is not tethered to anything. there is no why are correct -- connecting it to the ground with some real-world substance. when you start to really worry -- is the u.s. dollar hyper inflating into the heavens? it could lead you down this line of tanking that frankly it's kind of scary and i just do not think that that is going to happen.
although i sympathize with the caller's concerns, i just think that for better or for worse we in thistied together endeavor of protecting the value of the dollar. host: we have this tweet -- that is a great question. i think that with venture capitalists right now, the mentality is that these early days, at least some of the people i have talked to, the early days are now like the early days of the internet. nobody outside silicon valley really understood what it was or what the potential might be. a lot of people outside silicon it as aoh-pooh'd frivolous experiment.
i think a lot of people in silicon valley are trying to look the on what is today an obvious bubble in the speculative value of bitcoin. what they are seeing is less the kind of super libertarian i do not want to be a participant in ideal, they are actually seeing this marvelous tool for online transaction, this idea of peer to peer money. the internet has never really deliver that to us as consumers. people in silicon valley, when they talk about e-commerce, that is what they are thinking about with peer to peer transactions. that is where they see it as potentially the most powerful. whether you are a mom and pop shop of eight people or a giant corporation. least i seee at venture capitalists primary .nterest in bitcoin as far as cozying up to legislators, does that suggest motivert of alternative
or nefarious purpose? i do not really know, but i do think that the fact that a lot of people who are positive about bitcoin, they are not just posting blogs about how they do not ever want to pay their taxes and by carolyn. aey are saying that this is new and legitimate form of money and if it is going to be that, we need to embrace regulation and regulators and help them to understand what it is and help them establish parameters so that it can become enmeshed in the financial system, so that it does not flee overseas and all of the usage and innovation. we do not want the usage to flee overseas because that would potentially leave the u.s. and outcon valley entrepreneurs of what is potentially a great profit. we are talking about
bitcoin, its value, what it all moot -- and what it all means. this tweet -- host: here on the cnbc website, they have a look at the value of was 550 the last trade two dollars. larry, go ahead. caller: good morning there, greta. ok, so let me tell you something there, the boy had a song in memphis and it was that i owe my so to the company to the company
store. we did that with our currency and the goaltender. you are forgetting -- well, you are young. you are forgetting that legal tender only came about because gold became too hard to carry around. earlier we went on the barter system, meaning you had to learn a trade, i had to learn a trade, we benefited each other. people did not need each other's crafts and all they had to do to develop legal tender was have gold. instead of the gold standard we went on the person standard. it in other words, we employed people. have fewer people employed and taxes are not coming like they should be. copper is becoming emptier and emptier. what we do not need is another way for people to own their soul to the company store, to bring us back around to the metaphor, we need something that enhances everyone to learn to do something besides gather and
collect money, which has been easier and easier, the ones and zeros in the computer. , yourdavid wolman thoughts? guest: well, it is all just zeros and ones on the computer. this is the idea that frightens a lot of people. even if you are not talking about bitcoin, the fact that most money today is already digital. so much of it vaporized, all of that value was gone a few years ago with the financial meltdown. it is your caller, to me analogous to the way that people think about gold. they are just so worried about the dollar and where it might go , they want something that they perceived to be is more stable. in a way, these people are perfect potential bitcoin users
because of this idea that bitcoin has a limited supply and that the algorithm has set a limit on how many will be out there. 21 million coins will be created or issued and that is it. that is exactly why it is not a viable currency, some say, but others say that this is precisely why it will thrive and have strong value into the future. we will see which camp is right. the gao is reporting that there may be as many as 11 bid: --bitcoins. mike, new york, go ahead. caller: did you speak to a constitutional lawyer or expert on this piece? in section eight, section 10, it states that only congress can coin money, no one else can coin
money. i think the reason these people are going to congress now to lobby them is to try to buy them off so that they can make it legal to coin their own money. guest: well, i did not look into that for the essay we are talking about, but in writing about "the end of money," i looked into that and more, and the reality is that much more innovation with currency is permissible under the law than most of us might think upon first glance. where we run into problems, actually, is if you start to mint coins that look very much like a u.s. nickel, dime, or quarter, that is going to get you in trouble. the same thing, of course, for counterfeit engine mins. but the boundary between what is and is not permissible currency
is really not clear. some of those things are clear -- if you make a representation that looks too much like a $100 bill, you will get in trouble, you are a counterfeiter. but with something like bitcoin, disney dollars, airline miles, , facebook credits -- there are all kinds of new forms of money being born all the time and they are not illegal. when we talk about beagle tender -- frankly, this is something before writing the book that i misunderstood, i thought legal tender was -- you have to use dollars. that is not the case. it only means that if i owe you money and i have a debt that is denominated in dollars, we have agreed that that is my debt. when i come to pay it in dollars you cannot subsequently say to me know, you have to pay me in euros, what have
you. it is all for settling debts, but there is nothing from stopping me from pain you with airline miles for your goods and services. , to questionslman from twitter -- i can do my best. the first one, how can you as acipate in bitcoin, copy out right now, it does really look like it is -- caveat right now, it does look very expensive. i would not advocate for anyone anyone without excess money to jump into the fray. but if you do want to participate in bitcoin, do some reading online first and foremost. the best access point is probably one of these exchanges.
much like a currency exchange window at an airport where you are going to change your dollars your trip tor europe, you go to a currency exchange online and you can change dollars into bitcoin. you buy some and then you have them in a virtual wallet that you can the ploy as you see fit. so, that is one. as far as how it differs from , paypal is a way to settle a transaction that is relatively swift and is enabling online transactions for merchants that really did change the world, but paypal transactions are still kind of wrapped up in the credit card network. to open a paypal account, you still need to give them credit card information. are takingn, you this virtual alternative currency and using it directly for the exchange of goods and services you are acquiring.
you are leaving the credit card industry, the banks, the national currencies out of the equation when you are using it. host: we have this message from twitter -- host: let me add to that, what are miners? (202) 737-0002 who will --guest: who will be using it is whoever wants to. there is this chicken and egg problem, because i am not going to use bitcoin if no merchants around me will accept it. for the merchants the problem is ash why would i go through the trouble of making it possible for my business to accept this if i do not see any consumers out there who really want to use it? there is this chicken and a difficulty, but nevertheless a lot of people are already using and sell a lot of
things online. the same question, miners, this gets more into the nitty-gritty of how the distributed network of bitcoin works. one way i like to think about bitcoin is like a 19th-century merchants ledger of all the transactions coming in and out, except this ledger is not just sitting on one shopkeeper's desk, this ledger is distributed over the entire network. so, every transaction denominated in bitcoin is recorded in the ledger. the process of doing that recording, of validating the transaction, is also known as mining. in that process, people's computers out there are settling a transaction and also performing these computational puzzles and they are rewarded with new bitcoin when they do
so, when they win the race. that process is also known as mining. next.john, you are portsmouth, ohio, republican caller. guest: my question is such -- governments thrive off of taxes. they use this to pay their employees, to pay your congressman, your president, to pay their soldiers, to pay for their warmish scenes. how are they going to tax this throughout the world so that governments get their money? i will take the answer off the air. guest: a great question, and right now they have no idea how to. that is the short answer. that is partially why these hearings are taking place. but for a bit of perspective, even though bitcoin is in the press right now and the value has skyrocketed recently, it is still such a miniscule fraction
of the modern economy that i do not think government is too worried about it yet. having said that, if you are making tens of millions of dollars worth of bitcoin with your new venture a few years from now, the irs is going to want some of that. have aw, people different feeling about that, depending on the politics. but there is no question that this is a puzzle for governments and for tax collecting agencies. host: one of our viewers says -- michael, bloomington, indiana, independent caller. i just had aer: comment. well, a few comments. your question earlier about borrowing,ding and there is already a healthy economy in this. several third parties who provide security services for
transactions between peer to peer lending. number two, the a coin --bitcoin bitcoin ledger is a secured by is secured by cryptology. whether it becomes the currency currenciesd or not, are heading in this direction of cryptographic security, because method ofs the safest for taking current sees from double spending or counterfeiting. exchanges are [indiscernible] --
host: the average person is getting pretty confused at this point. can you explain what michael is talking about there? guest: another way to think about it, if bitcoin fails for some reason, there will be -- if not already are, 8, 18, or 38 bitcoin-likeoi innovations out there in the wings. i mentioned in the ledger earlier that tracks all the transactions. he is right that the identities involved in the transactions, those participants are rejected by cryptography. is so closebitcoin to being anonymous is a medium of exchange. almost as good as cash when it comes to protecting your privacy . but it is not anonymous in that all the transactions are tracked
on this ledger. that is crucial with this issue of double spending. in other words how do you stop someone from turning the 20 bitcoin into 40 bitcoin because they are good at computer coding? this is the answer, you have this enormous ledger tracking the transactions so that once a spent, not only can you see that it has been spent, but everyone in the network and see it has been spent. this is part of the power and isic and ruler of bitcoin the crypto currency of the future. host: we are running out of time, quickly, who started bitcoin? guest: nobody knows. to me this is another ingredient in the power of this currency. a currency needs trust and faith for people to use it and for it to have value and i think that the mysterious creation myth of bitcoin is part of the magic of